In today's world, lawsuits are an inevitable cost of doing business. Even if you're a good person who always tries to do right by your customers, there will almost certainly come a time when someone wants to sue you. Here's what you need to do to protect yourself.
Put Yourself First
If you're worried about losing your house, at best you'll have trouble focusing on your business's needs. At worst, you might face the choice of having to sacrifice your business to protect your personal assets.
To be able to fully defend your business, you'll need to take your own interests out of the picture. To do this, form a corporation or LLC so that your personal assets are protected in any lawsuit against your business. You should also carry commercial liability insurance to cover any claims involving business actions you took that might allow a lawsuit against you as an individual.
Walk Through Your Business Like Someone Itching to Sue
Professional plaintiffs often drive around looking for lawsuits. They could be searching for a business with doors an inch too narrow for the Americans with Disabilities Act or a wet floor where they can claim a slip and fall. Unfortunately, courts will often side with these plaintiffs even when the court knows they were looking for a lawsuit because the courts take the position the general public was still at risk.
To defeat these professional plaintiffs, you need to go beyond common sense. Don't just look around thinking if a normal person would consider your business safe but actually look for reasons to sue yourself. This could also be a fun game for your employees or friends.
Have Regular Meetings with an Attorney
Have ongoing discussions with an attorney about the risks your business faces. This could be about changes to your business plan or new activities you intend to start. The attorney will also be able to alert you to any recent court cases or other trends that might impact your existing operations.
Even though this adds a recurring expense, avoiding even just one lawsuit will more than pay for it.
Involve a Commercial Litigation Lawyer As Soon as Possible
If your business is being sued or you think you might be, get a lawyer involved as soon as possible. Trying to handle the situation on your own could lead to you making mistakes that impact your legal rights and cost you money. To fully protect yourself, schedule a consultation with a commercial litigation attorney at the first sign of trouble.